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Revenue & Customs v (1) Clayton Egleton (2) Trade Eazy Ltd (3) Shaheed Vali (4) Frakhhameed Rahman

The court had jurisdiction to make a freezing order against a potential debtor of an individual or company against whom the claimant had a cause of action on the footing that enforcement of a judgment against the defendant might lead to its liquidation or (if an individual) bankruptcy whereupon the liquidator or trustee in bankruptcy would be able to pursue claims against third parties. If freezing orders were to be obtained against potential judgment debtors of a company pending the making of a winding-up order, it should be a provisional liquidator rather than a petitioning creditor who sought and obtained them.

29 September 2006

The applicant Customs applied for the continuation of freezing injunctions against the respondents. Customs alleged that the second respondent company (T) and another company (C) had been involved in a large-scale VAT missing trader and/or carousel fraud. The first respondent was the sole director and controller of C and the other respondents were directors of T, one being also a shareholder. Customs had presented a petition for the winding up of C based on unpaid VAT of over £35m. Customs had obtained freezing injunctions against the respondents on a without-notice application on the basis that they had all been improperly implicated in the fraud with the consequence that C had substantial claims against them, which would be likely to be pursued by a liquidator of C, and that the liquidator would have his own claims against them under statute if C was ordered to be wound up. Customs did not allege that it had any claims of its own against any of the respondents, and although Custo...

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